The odds in favour of you being born were slim | Nassim Nicholas Taleb, The Black Swan

The odds in favour of you being born were slim

“Imagine a speck of dust next to a planet a billion times the size of the earth. The speck of dust represents the odds in favor of your being born; the huge planet would be the odds against it. So stop sweating the small stuff."

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Welcome to Starlink Express brought to you by Elon Musk

Welcome to Starlink Express brought to you by Elon Musk!

It turns out that Wellington CBD and Mount Victoria close to where I live is prime viewing for the Tesla Starlink Satellites as they cruise through the sky after dark. Starlink taken from the top of Mt Victoria Blink and you'll miss it though. It's all over in about 2 minutes. They rocket past in…

Cosmic Cuttlefish by Sylvia Ritter

Ancient words of the day: Glamour and grammar

Glamour is an 18th Century corruption of the word grammar. Or the occult processes that were traditionally associated with learning during the middle ages. The words grammar and glamour are also associated with the word grimoire - a spell-book. Glamourie: witchcraft, magic, fascination or a spell Glaumerify: to cast a spell over or bewich Glamour-bead:…

Film Review: High Life

Film Review: High Life

I saw this one at this year's NZIFF in Wellington. Directed by Claire Denis, High Life is about a group of prisoners who are used as guinea pigs in sexual experiments by an evil nurse played by Juliette Binoche on board a space mission. I don’t normally speak in such plain terms about the plot…

Emerging Artist Profile: Eleonor Piteira @_eleonorp

Content Catnip recently interviewed established Portuguese artist Eleonor Piteira. She once wanted to be an astronaut as a child, but instead has allowed her imagination to wander all over the galaxy through her striking an beautiful art, impressing people like director Guillermo del Toro along the way...

Ambient Album Review #1: 'Everything' by Lukas Boysen & Sebastian Plano

Ambient Album Review #1: ‘Everything’ by Lukas Boysen & Sebastian Plano

Here are a collection of my favourite ambient, dub, experimental and drone albums of all time. They are in no particular order because they're all brilliant. I hope you will give them a listen, let me know if you enjoy them! Everything is a spawling, epic atmospheric soundtrack that echoes the enormity of the universe.…

The beautiful poetry of the Maori/Polynesian Star Compass - Atea a Rangi

Atea a Rangi: Star Maps of the Maori and Pacific Peoples

In the past, I've written about Maori sea navigation by the stars and the legend of Matariki. Although nothing prepared me for the utterly beautiful Maori star compass which has been carved and placed on a remote and wild beach in the Hawkes Bay, between Hastings and Napier. The Star Compass - Atea a Rangi…

David Bowie’s Top 100 Favourite Books http://wp.me/p41CQf-3R

Starman, Bowie and the symbolism of SpaceX’s new world

Bowie needs no introduction in his ability to induce wonder, awe and beauty in anyone he touches. And now even after death, his legacy lives on in the form of a mannequin Star Man set to take a silence-filled orbit around our dark solar system and towards its final destination of Mars. The poetry and…

https://www.planetfour.org/?_ga=1.54777707.1175820507.1460107316#/home

Explore and classify galaxies and planets for real scientific studies

Nowadays, it's possible to become not just a participant in scientific studies, but one of the researchers. The internet and crowd-sharing knowledge has made this possible. We are now swimming in data, so rather than wade through everything themselves, scientists are asking the ''hive mind'' of the internet to help them to resolve challenges, and…

Dr Helen Sharman

Space dreams by astronaut Helen Sharman

Helen Sharman was the first Briton in space. Now that she's back down on Earth, she recounts a beautiful, evocative space dream and how she longs to be back up there orbiting around the pale blue dot. It turns out that astronauts looking at the vastness of continents from space see where the people they love reside,…

The Culinary Cosmos: A Tasty Rendering of the Universe Using Things We Eat

The Culinary Cosmos: A Tasty Rendering of the Universe Using Things We Eat

Creator Navid Baraty is a freelance photographer in Brooklyn and Los Angeles. In his spare time, this certified space geek loves to arrange common Kitchen condiments into strikingly accurate renditions of the cosmos. "I'm a really big space geek. I'll look at NASA images or Hubble images to see how things were placed in the sky, and I try…

Oxidised metal films photographed using a microscope and an Amazon Fire phone by Reddit user Friz Face.

One person’s trash is another’s treasure: oxidised metal film under the microscope

They could be a collection of post-apocalyptic planets viewed from space. However these pieces of enchanting art were not made by humans but by natural phenomena. Science is beautiful. The excellent Reddit page MicroPorn features close up microscopic images of materials. This collection of oxidised metal films were photographed using a microscope and an Amazon Fire…

An operatic journey through our solar system at the speed of light

Join me for an operatic journey at the speed of light

If you're like me and tend to gaze up at the night sky and wonder about life and the meaning of it all then you can't help but be swept up in the events of the past few weeks. NASA estimates that 1 billion earth-like planets in our galaxy alone NASA New Horizons Crew find…

Eclipse Hunting For Star-gazing Dreamers

Eclipse Hunting For Star-gazing Dreamers

A solar eclipse is an awe-inspiring phenomenon that visits earth only once every couple of years or even decades. Ever since ancient times, humans have been fascinated, fearful and reverent of eclipses. Myth and the Solar Eclipse Ancient Greeks, Mesopotamians and Egyptians were the first to record solar eclipses. In 585 BC, Herodotus wrote 'Day…

The Falling Cat Phenomenon: How NASA Trained Astronauts For Zero Gravity

The Falling Cat Phenomenon: How NASA Trained Astronauts For Zero Gravity

Back in the golden era of space exploration - the 1960's, NASA scientists were concerned with how astronauts would orient their bodies in space. This led to a watershed study at Stanford, featured in the International Journal of Solids and Structures, entitled "A Dynamical Explanation of the Falling Cat Phenomenon."       Partly funded by…

Life in a Doughnut-Shaped World: NASA Artwork From the 70’s

In the 1970's NASA and Stanford University held three space colony studies. Attendants of the course produced artistic renderings that showed what could theoretically be possible in a future inter-planetary world. This doughnut-shaped world was a pristine, insular and remarkably beautiful space sanctuary called the Stanford Torus. Click on the images below to magnify and view…

Inter-Planetary Topography and Splashes of Colour

Map Porn Part 1: Inter-Planetary Topography

Have you ever pondered about the topography of the moon's surface? Well I have. My brain works in weird and wacky ways. So naturally before we expose what the moon's surface actually looks like, you need to see what the moon would look if you were on acid. courtesy of The Mighty Boosh. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-4qxQRKAI2o Previously,…